A somewhat snarky reaction by a legislative leader, to a ruling by a Dane County judge, has drawn a rebuke from another jurist. Judge Josann Reynolds ruled Thursday that Governor Scott Walker must order elections in the 1st state Senate District and 42nd Assembly District by March 29.
Asked to respond to the ruling by Reynolds, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) noted that it would likely be appealed. “An activist Dane County judge is usually overruled by a common sense appeals court, that says we should not be legislating from the bench,” Vos said at the Capitol Thursday.
The Republican leader added that even Governor Scott Walker “might have appointed somebody who decided to become an activist judge,” when a reporter pointed out that Reynolds was first appointed by the Republican governor in 2014.
“Something about the water in Dane County — which is why I stay here as little as I can — makes people feel like that they are smarter than the rest of the state,” said Vos, who lives in Racine County.
Reynolds ruled in a suit brought by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder‘s National Democratic Redistricting Committee. She was defended, and Vos criticized, by Circuit Judge William Hanrahan, who heads the state’s Fifth Judicial District.
In a letter to the Speaker, Hanrahan wrote that Vos’ comments are “inflammatory, uncalled for, and are patently offensive to the dedicated public servants, like Judge Reynolds, that work tirelessly to apply the law that you in the legislature create.” The Wisconsin State Journal reports that Hanrhan’s letter asked Vos to apologize.